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Microwave ovens target water molecules in food and increase movement through an energy called microwaves. The friction caused by the water molecules creates heat. With the passing of these waves through the food, no ions or subatomic particles enter the food, thus the meal does not become “radioactive.” From time to time, an article about microwaving food may warn of the dangers of molecular “excitability” or proteins breaking down. Molecular movement always increases with higher temperatures and proteins are altered by all forms of cooking.

Plastics and Microwaves

Foods microwaved in plastic have been shown to absorb hormone-disrupting compounds such as Bisphenol A, or BPA. Absorption may be increased when the plastic is in contact with fats and oils or with longer cooking times. By microwaving food in glassware, the estrogen-mimicking compounds are avoided.

Microwaving and Nutrient Integrity

Recent studies were done to compare antioxidant levels after various methods of cooking vegetables.  Vegetables cooked in the microwave retained their antioxidant power significantly above those boiled or fried.  Surprisingly, microwaved vegetables kept their healthy properties over their steamed or pressure-cooked counterparts.  

Topic summary contributed by Laura

All Videos for Microwaving

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